2012's Giants Beware introduced Claudette and her adventuring pals in one of the strongest, funniest YA graphic novels I've ever enjoyed; the followup, Dragons Beware keeps all the charm and excitement while advancing the story.
I've lost track of how many times my daughter and I have re-read Giants Beware, but every time we do, we find something new to appreciate. Claudette and her friends are such wonderful characters — a perfect trio of conflicting ideas of bravery, prudence, comfort and propriety — and the story they enact works on so many levels, including a deep overarching mystery that's only hinted at.
Dragons Beware opens with the triumphant kids living hero's lives in Mont Petit Pierre, and hating every minute of it. Trapped by their success and under pressure to move on with their lives, Claudette, Gaston and Marie yearn for adventure.
Lucky for them, adventure comes looking for them! After gargoyles besiege the town walls, the mystery of the dragon that killed Claudette's mother and ate her father's legs and one arm becomes more than a story — it becomes a quest!
Dragons Beware has all the charm of Giants, but it also deepens the story. Claudette and Gaston and Marie may be comic book characters, but they're not two dimensional. As funny and cute as they are, they're also growing as people. Likewise, the great mystery of Mont Petit Pierre is coming into focus, with more tantalizing hints about the ancient battles and enmities that were formed long before the first volume.
All the great secondary characters from Giants are here — the River King, the witch Amelie — as well as a host of new monsters and allies, and a rogue wizard who's just scary enough to make the whole story race for the last page.
First Second were kind enough to provide us with the book's opening pages for your delight.
Dragons Beware! (The Chronicles of Claudette) [Rafael Rosado and Jorge Aguirre/First Second]